Helga Dreher
Das Torhaus - The Gatehouse  
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Coudray’s Gatehouse

When, in 2008, Helga Dreher wrote her novel, a small building covered with graffiti was to be seen at the entrance of the Erfurter Strasse in Weimar – apparently uninhabited and in decay. Nevertheless, a small plaque showed the house as being part of the national heritage and on another plaque those interested could read about its history.

Designed by Clemens Wenceslaus Coudray, the architect of Grand Duke Carl August of Saxony-Weimar-Eisenach, the house was built between 1822 and 1824 as one of four Weimar gatehouses after the town walls had been removed. Those houses served to collect fees from traders entering the town via the main roads. Later on the building became a railway station for the Berkaer Bahn (Berka Railway) which at that time terminated at Sophienstiftsplatz right in the town centre. After that it served as police quarters and was finally rented out to private tenants.

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Das Torhaus ca 1910

The Gatehouse, Erfurter Strasse ca. 1910 (Weimar City Archives)

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